What happens after a wrongful death deposition will depend on the specific circumstances of your case. In some cases, the information it contains will strengthen your court case, and you might choose to continue to trial. In other cases, it might help steer your case toward a fair and appropriate financial settlement.
Other things that happen after a wrongful death deposition is completed involve legal issues. The court reporter will transcribe the deposition and provide a copy to attorneys for each side. If a videographer was present, each side will receive a videotape of the proceedings. Your lawyer will explain how these items will be used as part of your evidence file and how they could potentially steer settlement negotiations.
The Reason Depositions Are Part of Your Family’s Wrongful Death Case
When your family seeks financial compensation after the unexpected loss of a loved one in an accident caused by someone else’s negligence, your case is likely to be settled without going to court. Sometimes, though, your case must go to court for resolution.
When that happens, you could be deposed as part of the discovery process. If you are, your lawyer will prepare you for the deposition process and will accompany you to the proceedings.
The attorney representing your family will explain who can file a wrongful death claim. They will also ensure the right family members seek compensation within the allowable time frame.
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Questions You Can Expect During Your Deposition
It can be hard to answer questions when you feel unprepared. It can also be difficult to know how much to say. In general, your answer should be short, succinct, and to the point.
You and other family members could be asked questions about the following:
- The cause and cost of your loved one’s untimely death
- How you prepared for the deposition and who worked with you
- Yourself, including your background, education, and employment
- Your familial relationship to the deceased person
- Your current financial condition and the decedent’s role in your finances
Your legal team will prepare you for the session and may ask sample questions to help you understand what to expect.
A Deposition Is Only One Way to Understand an Accidental Death
The deposition in a wrongful death case is one part of the discovery process. It is also only one part of the evidence that shapes your case. Additional evidence your lawyer may use to substantiate your family’s case includes the following:
- Accident or incident reports
- Your loved one’s medical records
- Your loved one’s income records
- Accident scene and injury photos
- Lay and expert witness statements
- Your background and criminal record
- Your knowledge of the accident
- Your family’s compensation
The lawyer representing you will not tax you and your family with collecting evidence that can be complex and painful. They will gather these items for you because they create a comprehensive evidence file and tell the story of the accident that led to your loved one’s death.
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Depositions Versus Interrogatories
In some wrongful death cases, you may undergo interrogatories rather than a deposition. Interrogatories are also part of the discovery process during which each side must share information with the other.
Here is how depositions and interrogatories differ:
- Depositions are questions answered before your wrongful death trial, live, under oath, and in the presence of a court reporter or videographer.
- Interrogatories are up to 40 written questions asked in writing and under oath. Just like with a live deposition, you are required to respond honestly and to the best of your ability.
Your lawyer will explain whether you will be subjected to one or both of these proceedings and will be with you at either.
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Your Wrongful Death Attorney Will Ensure You Are Prepared
No one should go into a deposition without being thoroughly prepared and well-represented. On your own, it can be difficult to prepare for a wrongful death deposition since you may not know what to expect. Your lawyer will:
- Explain who will be present
- Ask several sample questions
- Explain the deposition process
- Prepare any required documents
Your lawyer will also explain what will happen once the deposition is complete. The guidance and support of your lawyer can make a challenging process easier by ensuring you feel prepared.
You Do Not Have to Face a Deposition Alone
If your family is seeking monetary recovery after the negligence-related demise of a loved one, you may be deposed as part of the discovery process. If you are, our wrongful death lawyer will explain what happens before, during, and after a wrongful death deposition.
Learn more about what to expect and find out how hard we fight for the best possible outcome for your family by contacting our Bader Scott Injury Lawyers team today.
Call or text (404) 888-8888 or complete a Free Case Evaluation form